By J. Hoberman
By “tell[ing] the tale not only of what’s at the monitor yet what performed out at the back of it” (The American Scholar), Hoberman orchestrates a colourful, occasionally surreal competition in which Cecil B. DeMille rubs shoulders with Douglas MacArthur, atomic exams are proven on dwell television, God talks at the radio, and Joe McCarthy is bracketed with Marilyn Monroe. From cavalry Westerns, apocalyptic sci-fi flicks, and biblical spectaculars, video clips to media occasions, congressional hearings and political campaigns, An military of Phantoms “remind[s] you what feedback is meant to be: revelatory, reflective and as rapturous because the art itself” (Time Out New York).
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Additional resources for An Army of Phantoms: American Movies and the Making of the Cold War
Dmytryk’s assertion, which he isn't accredited to learn, pronounces that during the last few years, via photographs comparable to Crossfire, he has committed himself to the fight opposed to racial prejudice. Scott’s assertion is going additional, noting that, in an try and open up a discussion, he and Dmytryk had inspired the committee to work out Crossfire. unfortunately, yet predictably, “our invites have been overlooked. . . . We anticipated them to refuse to debate measures during which the perform of anti-Semitism might be abolished. to do that will be incompatible with the committee’s bigoted checklist and bigoted aid. ” Scott is going directly to cite “the chilly battle” that the committee is presently waging opposed to minorities, protecting that “the subsequent phase—total warfare opposed to minorities—needs no elaboration. background has recorded what occurred in Nazi Germany. ” now not strangely, Thomas refuses to permit Scott to learn his research, remarking, “This will not be the worst assertion now we have got, however it is sort of the worst. ” As with Dmytryk, Russell is recalled to aspect Scott’s CP club, and then Schary is questioned—not approximately Crossfire, yet approximately his institutions with the dread Hanns Eisler, who some time past 4 years has scored at the least 5 video clips for RKO. Explaining that he arrived on the studio merely final January, Schary refuses to take accountability. in basic terms then does the committee remind him that his staff Scott and Dmytryk have simply been published as Communists. Schary denies that their videos had any subversive parts and asserts that he wouldn't fireplace them or the other Communists except it used to be confirmed that they have been overseas brokers. in the meantime, in ny, Samuel Goldwyn, subpoenaed by way of the committee yet no longer referred to as to testify, sits and stews in his Sherry-Netherland suite, ten flooring above critical Park. The hearings are “a flop” and “a disgraceful performance,” the irate magnate tells a brand new York occasions reporter. “What do they need us to do, make anti-Communist photos? Is that find out how to result in peace? ” The final unfriendlies—Lardner, Cole, and Bertolt Brecht—appear on Thursday, by means of the secret witness who seems to be none except Louis J. Russell, this time creating a convoluted try to attach alleged Comintern brokers with Hollywood screenwriters Lawson and Biberman in a plot to wrest the key of the Whatzit from Robert Oppenheimer. bad studies within the long island occasions, the recent York usher in Tribune, and the Washington put up have brought on Thomas to deliver down the curtain. Hollywood leftists, liberals, and progressives think themselves effective. The Sunday employee splashes a photograph of the CFA delegation throughout web page one—Bogart and Bacall entrance and heart and the Capitol dome within the history. Sunday evening brings the second one installment of Hollywood Fights again with Groucho Marx as a shouting Parnell Thomas, bellowing “no” fourteen instances, and Keenan Wynn enjoying the “friendly” chairman. The tone is mostly critical: Thomas Mann questions the “alleged nation of emergency”; Dana Andrews, packing to depart to move on position for The Iron Curtain, reads a press release from Sam Goldwyn; Hollywood’s personal congresswoman Helen Gahagan Douglas concludes the night via calling the hearings a “tragic farce.